SEAI assists energy efficiency community projects through capital funding, partnerships, and technical support.

Type of funding available

Better Energy Communities

Better Energy Communities is our national retrofit initiative with grant support of up to €28 million each year. We support new approaches to achieving energy efficiency in Irish communities. Upgrades can take place across building types to reduce energy use and costs throughout the community. We aim to deliver energy savings to homeowners, communities, and private sector organisations. All projects should be community oriented with a cross-sectoral approach, and you must show that you can sustainably finance the proposed project.


This year, SEAI are supporting 57 projects under the Communities scheme. €25.3 is the total government funding that will be invested across all projects. This will help support energy efficiency upgrades in 698 homes and 570 non domestic buildings. Total project costs will come to €65.8 million.

Cumulatively the programme has now supported upgrades in 18,200 homes and 2,570 non-domestic buildings.

  • 34,676 tonnes CO2 emission reductions annually
  • 122.5 GWh total energy credits saved (obligated energy suppliers)

The Communities grant scheme is fully committed for 2019. SEAI will reopen for 2020 applications in autumn. Please keep an eye on our website for the 2020 application guidelines and workshop details.

  • €25.3m

    Total government grant funding in 2019
  • 57

    Total number of projects supported in 2019
  • 34,676

    Tonnes of CO2 reduced annually

What we fund

Projects supported

Successful Community projects must demonstrate some or all of the following characteristics.

  • Community benefits
  • Multiple elements, not a single focus
  • Mix of sustainable solutions
  • A clear road map
  • Innovation and project ambition
  • Justified energy savings
  • An ability to deliver the project

Measures supported

This list outlines the types of measures we want to support through the Communities grant programme.

  • Building Fabric Upgrades
  • Technology and System upgrades
  • Integration of Control Systems
  • Integration of renewable energy sources
  • Domestic Combined Fabric Upgrade
  • Single Building Demonstration projects will be considered under the Communities Grant.

We do not support projects without demonstrated community benefits. We also do not support projects with single elements, renewable elements only, auditing projects, (eg M&V requirements), Monitoring only projects. Homes constructed after 2006 can not be included. 


The Communities scheme for 2019 is now closed. The Communities scheme for 2020 will open in November 2019.

Partnership and Timeframes


Partnership is essential for a successful application. You should seek partnership from organisations that fall into the eligible categories. These partnerships can be assisted by SEAI if required.

Innovative and pioneering partnerships between sectors are encouraged. This might include collaborations between public and private sectors, residential and non-residential sectors, commercial and not-for-profit organisations, or financing entities and energy suppliers. Projects that are part of a larger energy efficiency project or that engage with other SEAI programmes are welcome.


The programme is run annually through a competitive process. Once applications are closed, we then review what projects will be supported under the scheme.


SEAI will be facilitating an upcoming workshop on 6th November 2019 in the Maldron Hotel, Portlaoise. This workshop is based on the Communities 2020 scheme and is open to stakeholders and other interested parties who wish to gain additional information about the grant scheme. If you would like to attend, please make sure you book your place.

Contact us

Email or
Call 01 808 2162

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